‘Hellbender’ (2021) is a must watch for horror fans

How does a low-budget horror film released through a little-known production company succeed in the mainstream markets? Well, it probably doesn’t. But “Hellbender” (2021) has all the qualities necessary to do just that.    “Hellbender” is a folk horror coming of age story about a teen girl, Izzy (Zelda Adams), kept isolated in the woods […]

‘The Bubble’ is Judd Apatow’s worst movie yet

“The Bubble” (2022), is a two-hour meta-comedy, written and directed by Judd Apatow, about celebrities filming a dumb action movie during the pandemic. Had I known that information going in, I probably would not have watched it. I really wish I had known that information.   There is simply nothing as cringey as a poorly […]

‘Our Flag Means Death’ is the best new show on television

We all know the story of Blackbeard: The violent, sociopathic, demon pirate who put fuses in his beard to terrify his victims and ended up with his decapitated head strung up the mast of his own ship. What you may not know is this dangerous homicidal man once co-captained a ship with Stede Bonnet, or […]

‘Texas Chainsaw Massacre’ (2022) is awful and no one should be surprised

Every “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” (TCM) movie is terrible. Spanning from the original to the 2022 Netflix release and taking a tiny reprieve for “Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2” (1986), which is arguably watchable, the series has always been awful. I state this to be clear that I came into “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” (2022) from a place […]

‘Cyrano’ (2021) is an old story told well

“Cyrano” (2021) is the newest musical iteration of the life of Cyrano de Bergerac. This simple story told so many times before, has been minorly reimagined, placed on top of a wonderful score and put in the hands of a fantastic cast to create a very watchable albeit imperfect movie.    Whether you know it […]

A profile of Sadjoy

Michael Schneeweis, who releases music under the name Sadjoy, describes himself as a poor interviewee. In his dedication to answering questions honestly, he feels he contradicts himself or does not answer questions as fully as he intended to. So instead of a formal outlined interview, Schneeweis and I just talked for a little over two […]

‘Scream’ (2022) is a horror sequel actually worth watching

It is always good to start a movie review with a joke and get a quick chuckle out of the reader right off the bat. But unfortunately, “Scream” (2022) has robbed me of this opportunity. Every quip that could be written mocking the idea of this film, or what this film represents, has already been […]

‘Don’t Look Up’ is a political satire for the ages

People are no longer fazed by threats of the world ending. We cannot afford that luxury. If the whole world came to a halt every time society was on the brink of destruction or mass death seemed imminent, nothing would get done. “Don’t Look Up,” a political satire released on Netflix in December, understands how […]

A conversation with Jesse Sendejas of Days N’ Daze

Musician Jesse Sendejas is grateful for the life he has. That’s what stood out to me most during our short conversation outside the Middle East, a small venue in Cambridge, this October. Sendejas is a singer and guitarist for the band Days N’ Daze, a thrash grass band from Houston, Texas. Thrash grass, often colloquially […]

‘Lamb’ deserves no acclaim

“Lamb,” directed by Valdimar Jóhannsson, is an Icelandic film that premiered at the Cannes Film Festival this year before seeing a limited U.S. release through A24. An addition to the slowly popularizing folk horror genre, “Lamb” is a minimalistic film shot in the middle of nowhere, featuring little dialogue, plot or entertainment.    The film […]

‘Halloween Kills’ is a massive disappointment in a series that constantly disappoints

“Halloween Kills” is the third sequel, second threequel, 12th Michael Myers feature and 13th installment in the “Halloween” franchise. This franchise has always been a mess, and yet the undeniable impact of “Halloween” (1978), aided by its iconic killer and score, as well as two or three pretty good sequels has kept the series relevant […]

Hoot staff recommends: Midterm music edition

Sasha Skarboviychuk When it comes to studying, the best background noise is silence. But in cases when my roommates or anything else in my surroundings is making noise, I opt for classical music. My big thing with this is that the music I listen to while studying cannot have lyrics; if the song has lyrics […]

A conversation with HappyHappy: a DIY musician you should listen to

HappyHappy (she/they), also known as Eve, is an Indiana-based musician who has released eight full-length albums in the last six years and has 5600 monthly listeners on Spotify. She describes herself as “folk punk adjacent,” but notes that none of her recent albums really fall into the same genre. They vary based on what she […]

You should watch ‘Taskmaster (U.K.)’

Alex Horne, a comedian effectively unknown to American audiences, has created the best game show currently on television. “Taskmaster (U.K.),” the first of eight country-specific Taskmasters including a one-season failure based in the U.S., is currently on its 12th series. The show has been gaining a lot of popularity in the U.K., with an average […]

‘The White Lotus,’ a painful reality in paradise

Snobbery, ignorance, petty feuds and a relative lack of likable characters: HBO’s “The White Lotus” is unpleasant and frustrating to watch, and yet it leaves viewers engaged and wanting more after six-hour-long episodes.   “The White Lotus” follows a group of guests and employees at a high-end beach resort in Hawaii called the White Lotus. […]

‘Pig’ is a revenge film done right

“Pig” is not what you think it is. It is not a wacky gore film carried on the back of Nicholas Cage’s crazy, nor is it a member of the “John Wick” “Taken” genre of ultra-violent revenge fantasies. “Pig” is a solemn, sad, slow-paced film that carries a poignant message and takes you on an […]

‘The Empty Man’ is an intriguing mess

If a horror movie is going to exceed an hour and 40 minutes, it better have a good reason. “The Empty Man’s” near two and a half-hour run time only serves to stretch out this could-have-been-intriguing horror movie into a clunky, inconsistent thriller with a few spooky moments. A clever plot and competent filmmaking only […]

‘Stay out of the Attic’ is a fun, but fatuous B-horror

The entertainment value in a movie does not always have to correspond with the quality of that movie. In celebration of Passover, I sat down and watched a wonderfully gory horror movie that exemplified this idea. “Stay out of the Attic” is a fast-paced, stereotypical, 80-minute body horror movie that both entertained me and forced […]

‘The Mauritanian’ is a boring depiction of a remarkable story

Stories of American depravity need to be told. “The Mauritanian” tells an important, still horrifyingly relevant, true story of a Guantanamo Bay (Gitmo) detainee. This film thrives in bringing sympathy and attention to the men wrongfully imprisoned in Gitmo but fails to enthrallingly present the court case the movie centers around. Based on the book […]